So far this project, I have been meeting with my mentor, Josh once a week for half-hour sessions on the banjo, and I think it is the perfect time. I ask questions, and we work on new material, and then I spend the rest of the week doing “homework” to make sure I understand the concepts that were taught. Overall, I am working about 4-5 hours a week consciously on my in-depth. I meet with Josh (face-to-face) at the music teaching-rooms above the Port Coquitlam Long and Mcuades because that is where he works. It is a cross-generational mentor ship, but not by much and we seem to have similar likes and interests. For example, we are both interested in bluegrass style banjo playing, so that is what the current focus of my lessons is. Our communication so far has been isolated to just our weekly meetings, but I have his cell number if something urgent comes up.
In address to the questions posted in Ms. Mulder’s blog, I think that Josh and I have been communication quite effectively, with complete understanding and acknowledgement on both sides of the equation. Both of us get our messages across and neither one of us has a particular dominance in conversation beyond the mentor/learner split. The one major learning problem we have come across so far is that I am not very good at playing musical instruments. I plan to address this by stepping up my home practice, but I still sometimes struggle with new material and have to go at a slower pace. This is dragging down my rate of learning, but I am confident that I will be able to reach the goals I had set up for myself by in-depth night. Three strategies I could use to improve the quality of the communication with my mentor are to know more about the subject he is teaching me, learning more about his likes and dislikes, and trying harder to understand the position he is in. I can implement these by practicing longer on the banjo, doing more research on the internet, talking to josh about things other than banjos, and putting myself in his shoes.
All in all, I believe I am progressing well with communicating with my mentor and the in-depth project in general, and I believe I am on the fast track to being ready for the big night. Until next time,